Community prays for eight-year-old shooting victim - - Jackson, MS

Community prays for eight-year-old shooting victim

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By Monica Hernandez - bio | email | twitter

JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - Local pastors and community members gathered inside the Sykes Road Boys and Girls Club in Jackson Friday morning, near the spot where eight-year-old Sanaa Hill was shot the day before.

The Sykes Elementary student was doing her homework when a bullet from outside the building peirced the right side of her head.

On Friday morning, Hill was listed in critical condition at UMC.

"The city is going through reapierceda, and we're hoping that healing will start to take place," said Charlie Gaulden, a Jackson resident who attended the prayer vigil for Hill.

Although he didn't know the little girl, Gaulden felt the need to offer his support.

You can still see the bullet holes in two walls of the building. Hill's homework is still on the table where she was sitting.

The executive director of the Boys and Girls Club, Billy Redd, said the tragedy emphasizes the need for an organization that keeps kids off the streets.

"These four walls served to protect them, because at least it slowed the bullet down," said Redd.

Around 170 kids were inside at the time, including Gurtha Harris' seven-year-old grandson.

"It could have been anybody's child. It could have been my grandson. It could have been anybody's son. We just have to pray and trust in the Lord," said Harris, a South Jackson resident who attended the prayer vigil.

Counseling is be available to all members and staff of the Boys and Girls Club.

Meanwhile, the community continues to pray for Hill, who underwent surgery for a bullet wound on the right side of her head hours after the shooting.

"We're praying for her. We can't wait to see her fully recovered, and to see her back in this safe place," said Redd.

Witnesses said they saw a gray car speed away from the scene after firing three shots. Two black males and a black female were inside.

Anyone with any information is asked to call Jackson Police. That number is (601) 960-1234.

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